Family Integrity #460 — Youtube video seen as desperate: Barnardos

Family Integrity #460 — Youtube video seen as desperate: Barnardos

Forwarded to you by:

Craig Smith

Family Integrity

Youtube video seen as desperate: Barnardos

By ESTHER LAUAKI – Kapi-Mana News

Barnardos has rubbished a Youtube video posted by a local man about the “anti-smacking” referendum, saying it was a desperate attempt at a smear campaign.

The controversial referendum, to be held between July 30 and August 21, on the so-called anti-smacking legislation, will ask Kiwis to vote yes or no to the question, “Should a smack as part of good parental correction be a criminal offence in New Zealand?”

Porirua resident Renton MacLachlan, who opposes the legislation, posted a political satire about the topic on the popular website Youtube earlier this month.

Supporters of the law, Barnardos, took exception to the video in which Mr MacLachlan conducts an ‘in-depth’ interview with a fictional Barnardos employee (also played by Mr MacLachlan) called Dennis Morris-Traveler, spokesperson for the ‘yes vote’ campaign.

“I’ve been a supporter of parents’ rights to raise their own children for some time,” he told Kapi-Mana News.

“Barnardos and all other organisations like them who support the bill are saying that every parent that has ever smacked their child to discipline them – that’s most parents in New Zealand – is a child abuser. I think for an outfit like Barnardos to step into a public arena and label all these parents child abusers is outrageous.”

The organisation asked Mr MacLachlan to remove the video upon legal advice that its rights had been violated by him purporting to be an employee and expressing views that were not necessarily its own.

Every Child Counts project manager Deborah Morris-Travers, the real spokesperson for the yes-vote campaign, said the video was a desperate attempt to boost the opposition’s campaign.

“We here at Barnardos strongly believe that children should not be harmed and we support the safety of children. We’re not about using dirty, defamatory tactics for our campaign. They know that they’re going to lose this referendum and that this legislation will stay the same. The video is evidence of just how desperate they are really getting.”

Mr MacLachlan rejected her sentiments and said she was “whistling in the dark”.

“Consistently for years 85 per cent of people have rejected their arguments and for her to say it’s a desperate attempt is over the top.” He said Barnardos was one of several organisations he alluded to in the clip and feels they over-reacted.

“It was ridiculous. Anyone with half a brain could see that it was meant as a comedy. Spoof and satire are pretty well covered under freedom of speech law so I went ahead with it.”

Barnardos is not pursuing legal action.

Watch the video


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